I’m excited by the news on the press wire today. As one of the judges, I can’t wait to see the products. A record number of entries have been received from food and drink producers in Ireland by organisers of Great Taste 2013 – over 2400 in total from the whole Food Isle. From Northern Ireland there are 627 entries (up by 29% on 2012) and in the Republic of Ireland a total of 1806 products have been entered (43% up on 2012).
A week of judging, supported by distributor Pallas Foods, will take place at Bewley’s Hotel, Dublin, in late April, which involves each product being blind-tasted by expert food judges including chefs, restaurateurs, food writers and specialist food and drink retailers. The products awarded 3-stars during this week, will then go forward to the final stages of Great Taste 2013 which takes place in London in July.
“The Great Taste Supreme Champion, the overall winning product each year, has for the last two years been a product made in Northern Ireland and so our expectations are very high before we even start judging,” explains John Farrand, organiser of the Great Taste Award scheme. “McCartney’s of Moira triumphed in 2011 with its traditional corned beef, and Hannan Meats, also based in Moira, securing the trophy last year with an Italian inspired bacon called Moyallan Guanciale. In 2006, a smoked wild salmon from West Cork’s Woodcock Smokery was crowned Supreme Champion.”
Patrick Clement, Marketing & Development Manager at Pallas Foods said “Great Taste is the most trusted and recognised food and drink awards in Ireland and the UK. Pallas Foods is delighted to support the awards in Dublin this April. Being awarded a Great Taste star or more is a fantastic achievement and great acknowledgement for any business. In Ireland we have brilliant artisan food producers, I would encourage any of them to enter the award and get the stars they duly deserve giving their products great recognition.”